May 4th, 2012
Today the bonus word for the spelling test was Ms. Schmidt. My students had to spell my name. No one was able to spell it correctly, however there were some very interesting spellings I must share with you:
Ways to Spell Ms. Schmidt
Grading these tests was EXTREMELY entertaining. I especially liked the student who put Ms. S because this is what some students call me by who have difficulty saying my last name. I also like Smith, Smeat, and Samted haha. 🙂 I can’t make fun though because I would probably have a lot of difficulty spelling their last names too!
May 1st, 2012
Today my students worked in their groups to create their products. They were so excited for social studies today. They kept asking during math when social studies started. (Makes me feel good 🙂 ). We talked about the process we were going through of creating a product. We discussed assembly lines and how they assist when creating something.
My students had a little difficulty getting started right away, but they ended up getting a lot of work done. I LOVED watching them work on their projects. They were completely entranced with working and it was rather difficult to pull them away at the end of the period. The only difficulties I had with this lesson were handling materials. There are a LOT of materials involved (paper, glue, scissors, tape, etc). So I would suggest planning ahead and having materials ready in buckets or bins. I am very happy I pushed my students to plan ahead during the past lesson because it showed when they were working today. They knew what to do when they began working today, so their planning helped them in the end. If I were to teach this lesson again I would like it to be during a period with a longer amount of time. I was only able to teach this lesson in a 35 minute period. Unfortunately I could not have a larger period, nor could I make it last over two days. I feel that my students’ work would be much more complete looking had I been able to give them more time.
Overall it was a great lesson! I enjoyed watching them be imaginative and creative! 🙂
Check out some of our creations!
We did a great job working in groups! 🙂
Our final products! From left to right: Crunchy Crab Cereal, Trix Rice Lucky Reese’s Cereal, Fruit Pops, Mint Poptarts, and Grape Grams. 🙂
April 30th, 2012
The topic of today’s social studies lesson was ‘Designing a Product’. Instead of talking about how we design products (which is not extremely exciting) I had my students work collaboratively to create a product! (Much more interactive!). Each group will be making their own type of cereal. They will create a name for it, the ingredients used, what it will look like, and much more.
Today was merely the planning stage. Each person in every group was assigned a role. The roles were questioner, recorder, designer, peace maker, and checker. The questioner asked the questions that the group needed to answer, such as “What is the name of our cereal?”. The recorder wrote down the answers on a piece of paper. The designer worked with their group to draw a rough copy of what they wanted the front of their cereal box to look like. The peace maker wrote down what each person in their group would be doing the next day when they actually create their product. This is my favorite role because it requires students to think ahead and make decisions. It holds every student accountable for contributing to their group work. They will use this paper tomorrow when creating their products. I am so excited to see what they have planned for tomorrow!
They worked so well in their groups today. I was a little worried that we would run out of time before all groups could finish, but we finished on time! Some of the titles of the different cereal are as follows:
- Grape Grams
- Fruit Pops
- Crunchy Crab
- Trix Rice Lucky Reese’s
- Mint Poptarts
All groups were collaborating ideas and working as a team. I even saw one of my groups voting for ideas by placing their hands in together in the middle of the table if they voted yes (awesome!). This was such a fun lesson to teach! I can’t wait to see their creations tomorrow.
Recorder Worksheet| Peace Maker Worksheet| Designer Worksheet| Questioner Worksheet
April 25th, 2012
Yesterday there was a chorus of coughs in the classroom. Today I woke up with a dry throat. Coincidence? I think not 😦 I really dislike being sick, but it is even worse when it is nice outside!
I taught a lesson today about how exercise affects our muscles. I had my students up and moving for this lesson. I had them doing exercises in the middle of giving information. It was a nice change of pace from the usual talking/short PowerPoint. The kids got a kick out of it and begged for more. Though they also begged to stop. I guess they couldn’t make up their minds! They did jumping jacks, toe ups, squats, and lunges.
I also used response cards that had pictures of muscles before exercise and after exercise on them. The before exercise pictures show the muscle tendons being closer together, whereas the after exercise pictures show the muscle tendons further apart (they expand). The response cards were helpful, although next time I should make them larger. I also did not have the amount I needed. (I thought I counted correctly!).
Fun filled day,
Ms. Schmidt 🙂
Muscle Response Cards
This picture made me laugh a little. It made me think how much my students would complain if they had to lift weights. Haha! 🙂
April 20th, 2012
Today is a wonderful day because it is Friday! Our lesson on muscles went very well today. It was mostly a catch up day where students could finish work from previous science lessons. We worked on our flip books and added in a section about muscles. I also created a class set of mini arm dioramas that helps show that our muscles pull not push. It is a misconception that our muscles push and pull, but in fact they only pull. I had originally wanted my students to create these themselves, however after getting to know my class I realized that this would prove to be rather difficult. So I decided to make them myself, which took a rather long time for such a short demonstration.
Overall it has been a good day,
Ms. Schmidt 🙂
April 19th, 2012
I am feeling more rested today! Yipee! The bedtime worked! Today I was teaching my students about how we move our bodies- we use our joints! I demonstrated how we would move if we didn’t have joints (walking stiff & straight) which made them laugh. I gave my students examples of all 4 joints (gliding, hinge, ball and socket, and pivot). I then passed out response cards for each student. I would give students an example of a joint and they would raise their response card. This method worked very well.
Afterwards the students began working on a self-portrait. On their self-portrait they would circle joints on their body. I left the instructions a little open because some of my students have a lot of difficulty with writing. They will have to continue working on their portrait later today because we didn’t finish. I was amazed today when I took my students to art. They were WONDERFUL in the hallway! They are usually good but wow, this was another level of good. The kings and queens game has worked wonders! I will have to find other hallway games.
Ms. Schmidt 🙂
Joint Response Card Pictures
April 18th, 2012
My lesson about long bones went seemingly well today. It was a lot of instruction for the activity I used. I modeled this for students before beginning. Students were to predict how long their leg is (in centimeters) and then measure how long it actually is. I actually let them use string to help them measure the length. They would hold the string and hold it up to their leg & cut it. Using the string worked well for students. Then students did the same thing for their stride. After measuring and predicting the students compared the two strings. They should have been similar in size. Your stride should be the same as your leg.
Next time I would focus on predicting or measuring, not both. Some students didn’t understand the concept of predicting. Some students also needed help measuring with a ruler. A math lesson may be needed before teaching this lesson that highlights the math concepts used. It is Wednesday and I feel so worn out! When is the weekend?!? After rereading this entry I feel like it doesn’t make a lot of sense. Wow I really am tired! I am setting a bedtime for myself tonight!
A sleepy & exhausted,
Ms. Schmidt 🙂
Long Bone Estimation Worksheet
April 17th, 2012
Today I taught a lesson about skulls. The main idea of the lesson was to teach my students ways to keep their skulls safe. I had students group together and talk about discussion points I had given them. They worked very well in groups and had interesting answers. Then we created posters advising others to keep their skulls safe. I am really excited to see the final product, since they look nice thus far!
My supervisor came in to observe me during this lesson. It wasn’t as nerve-wracking as I had thought. My voice trembled a TINY bit and I stumbled over my words once or twice, but it all worked out fine 🙂 At recess one of my students gave me a huge handful of dandelions. She had rubbed them so close to her nose that she and a dandelion mustache. I had never seen a dandelion mustache before today! 🙂
A great day,
Skull Discussion Questions
Some examples of posters my kids created! 🙂 They were all very unique!
I also created a bulletin board to display their work. (Well there wasn’t a bulletin board I could use, so I used a bare wall. It’s just as good). I was pleased with my results 🙂
April 16th, 2012
Today I taught a lesson about how bones change over time. At first I wanted to do a timeline with my students, however my teacher informed me that they had made timelines in the beginning of the school year. A timeline would have been an easy way to teach this concept. This forced me to put my thinking cap on and let my creative juices flow! Instead I chose to have my students do a pretend archeological dig.
I gave each group a bag of pictures of different hand bones (baby, child, and adult bones). Their job was to work as a group and identify the bones as baby, child, or adult. They then had to create a bar graph based on these findings. I feel that I could make this lesson a lot stronger the next time around. [Though it did work very well the first time! :-)] Next time I would like to use different bones along with the hand bones. This would make it more challenging for students. I would also like to present it in a different way. For example, I could put the pictures of bones in a small box/envelope. It could have a stamp that says “Confidential”. I could give the students a lot more background information as well. Example: Saying the countries in which the bones were found. Geography standards could be integrated then! Next time around I would really like to build up the anticipation before giving each group their set of bones.
So many ideas!
Ms. Schmidt 🙂
P.S We are reading “Where the Sidewalk Ends” at the end of the day. The students love it! 🙂
Here are the following resources I created to help teach this lesson:
Pictures of Hands for Dig | Graphing Bones Worksheet
April 13th, 2012
Today I taught a lesson about the inside of bones. I didn’t feel 100% confident about this lesson working, but it actually went well. I showed my students a video on BrainPop as an opening. I used manipulatives while teaching them about the 3 parts of a bone (compact bone, spongy bone, and bone marrow). Each student received a drawing of a bone with the insides showing and a bag of items that represented each part. Two pieces of foam represented the compact bone, sponge for spongy bone, and silly putty for bone marrow. The silly putty wasn’t an issue like I thought it may be. I just needed to remind students to leave it alone once it was on their papers. I had students put on each piece as I gave them information about it. After giving all the information I had the students label the paper with the different parts we had just talked about. Then students got out their flip books and recorded information about the inside of the bone. Next time I will have the students create a key to color code the parts instead of drawing a line. Some students had difficulty labeling with lines. Overall this lesson worked out much better than I had anticipated. 🙂
Ms. Schmidt 🙂
Taking notes 🙂
An up close view of how we learned about the inside of bones!